Netflix has done it again. The world’s best streaming service has delivered another top-tier TV show – The Night Agent – that’s taken the globe by storm.
Based on Matthew Quirk’s book of the same name, the politically-charged spy thriller has rocketed to the top of Netflix’s TV chart since its March 23 release, with The Night Agent‘s 168.7 million hours viewed making it the second most-streamed Netflix series of 2023 so far. In short: The Night Agent is Netflix’s new TV show darling. Unsurprisingly, The Night Agent season 2 is on the way, too. And yes, you can expect it to make its way onto our best Netflix shows list soon.
If you’ve completed the 10-episode series, you’re sure to be on the lookout for similar genre fare to fill the void in your streaming calendar. Luckily for you, TechRadar’s entertainment experts are on hand to help. Below, you’ll find seven espionage-based action shows to watch on Netflix, Prime Video, Apple TV Plus, and more. You can thank us later for putting in the hard yards.
Here, then, are seven similar TV shows to Netflix’s The Night Agent.
Where to watch: Netflix
This espionage thriller miniseries, which stars Marvel actors Charlie Cox (Daredevil: Born Again) and Olga Kurylenko (Black Widow), is a criminally underrated Netflix series that’ll leave you guessing until its final episode.
Treason tells the tale of MI6 Deputy Chief Adam Lawrence (Cox), who’s installed as the agency’s new leader when the previous MI6 head, Sir Martin Angelis (Ciaran Hinds), is near-fatally poisoned by Russian spy Kara Yusova (Kurylenko). Soon secrets about Lawrence’s past – including his ties to Yusova – come to light, forcing Lawrence to go on the run with his family. Cue a tension-fuelled game of cat and mouse as shocking revelations and betrayals aplenty put the lives of Lawrence, his wife Maddy (Oona Chaplin), his children, and Yusova in grave danger.
Matt Charman’s latest TV offering takes itself a bit too seriously, and its ending is a tad anti-climactic. Even so, delightful performances from Treason‘s cast, its frenetic and suspense-filled plot, and absorbing twists and turns deliver enough style and substance to make it worth watching. Before you check it out, read our exclusive chat with Charman and Cox about how Netflix’s Treason asks: what if 007 put his family before country?
Available to stream on Netflix worldwide.
Where to watch: Netflix, Prime Video, Disney Plus, and Hulu
Looking for a bit more comedy from your spy thriller series? Try Archer, the hit adult animated spy-sitcom that’s one of the most consistently brilliant shows around.
The series follows Sterling Archer (Jon H. Benjamin), a narcissistic and womanizing secret agent who works for the dysfunctional International Secret Intelligence Service. Joining Archer in the espionage game are his snarky mom and former head of the agency Malory (Jessica Archer), openly gay bomb specialist Ray Gillette (Adam Reed), and professional field agent Lana Kane (Aisha Tyler), among others.
With its brilliant parodying of the spy genre, anachronistic Cold War-like setting, delightfully distinctive characters, and amusingly crude sensibilities, it’s little wonder Archer is viewed as one of the top animated series of recent years. With 13 seasons comprising 8 to 13 episodes apiece – all of which run around the 20-minute mark – you can binge Archer in a single weekend. Don’t blame us if that’s what you end up doing, mind you.
All 13 seasons are available to stream on Disney Plus and Hulu in the US and on Netflix in the UK. The first 10 seasons are streamable on Prime Video on British shores too. Lastly, the first 12 seasons can be watched on Netflix in Australia.
Where to watch: Netflix, Hulu, and Disney Plus
Few espionage-based shows were as popular as Homeland was in the 2010s – and with good reason. The political thriller starring Claire Danes and Damian Lewis was a titan of the spy genre upon initial release, with captivating leads, a thrilling, topsy-turvy narrative that immediately hooked viewers, and a thematic exploration of the War on Terror. It really was a series that tapped into the political landscape and the public consciousness like no other.
So, what’s it about? Carrie Mathison (Danes), a bipolar CIA operations officer, is reassigned to the CIA’s Counterterrorism Center after she conducts an unauthorized mission in Iraq. In her new post, Mathison’s world collides with that of Nicholas Brody (Lewis), a US Marine Sergeant who, eight years after going missing, is rescued from an al-Qaeda compound and hailed as a war hero on his return to the US. It’s not long, though, before Mathison starts to believe Brody poses a serious threat to the US – an assumption that sets Homeland‘s eight-season-long story in motion. Stick it on your watch list ASAP.
Available on Hulu and Disney Plus in the US, Netflix in the UK, and Disney Plus and 9Now in Australia.
The Night Manager
Where to watch: Prime Video
Is there an author who’s had a greater influence on the spy genre than John le Carré? James Bond creator Ian Fleming, yes, but there aren’t many others who can claim to have had as big an impact on this storytelling class as the British-Irish novelist.
Given the popularity of le Carré’s extensive works, it’s unsurprising that many of his books have been adapted on the big and small screens. One of the more recent live-action TV adaptations of his back catalog is The Night Manager, a six-part series based on le Carré’s book of the same name, which garnered critical acclaim upon release (initially on BBC One in the UK and AMC in the US).
The Night Manager tells the story of Jonathan Pine (Loki actor Tom Hiddleston), an ex-British soldier and the titular night manager who’s pulled back into the world he left behind. Tasked by Foreign Office task force leader Angela Burr (Olivia Colman) to infiltrate the inner circle of illegal arms dealer Richard Roper (Hugh Laurie), Pine soon finds himself in over his head in an international political chess match where nobody is who they seem.
A tightly paced, thrill-a-minute miniseries complete with towering performances from Hiddleston, Laurie, Colman, Tom Hollander (Major Lance Corcoran), and Elizabeth Debicki (Jemima Marshall)? Yes, please. One that’ll make it onto our best Prime Video shows list soon.
The Night Manager can be seen on Prime Video worldwide.
Where to watch: Apple TV Plus
Apple’s streaming service has been steadily pushing to make itself relevant with numerous high-quality TV offerings. And, with a veritable bounty of prestige shows (read our best Apple TV Plus shows to find out more) being met with critical acclaim, it’s succeeding.
One of its best-performing and fan-favorite TV series is Slow Horses, a London-based spy thriller packed with witty and sarcastic humor, riveting characters, and espionage-based action. Iconic actor Gary Oldman is easily the best part of the show, but there’s plenty more to enjoy from this somewhat underrated spy series.
For the uninitiated: Slow Horses stars Oldman as Jackson Lamb, the slovenly and rude head of Slough House – aka the purgatory-style MI5 division where rejected personnel (known as Slow Horses, hence the show’s title) are sent. Much to the chagrin of MI5’s Director Deputy General Diana Taverner (Kirstin Scott Thomas), though, Lamb and the rest of the supposedly bumbling Slow Horses team regularly (and inadvertently) become involved in putting a stop to plots that threaten the UK.
Slow Horses seasons 1 and 2 are viewable on Apple TV Plus globally.
Where to watch: Paramount Plus
Like The Night Agent, Rabbit Hole is a relative newcomer to the spy thriller genre. A Paramount Plus exclusive – one that could make it onto our best Paramount Plus shows – it stars 24 alumnus Keifer Sutherland as John Weir, a corporate spy who’s framed for murder by a mysterious group of individuals. Somewhat expectedly, Weir goes on the run as he attempts to clear his name.
Rabbit Hole‘s first two episodes only debuted on Paramount’s streaming service on March 26, so it’s hard to say if it’ll run out of steam before season 1’s finale arrives. Critics have suggested that could be the case, with Rabbit Hole already turning itself inside out with its elaborately intricate story. Others, though, believe Sutherland’s welcome return to the espionage world will give the series enough traction and keep audiences enthralled throughout its initial 10-episode run. This is one to check out if you’re an avid Sutherland fan, a diehard 24 lover, or even just a regular viewer looking for something new to watch.
Rabbit Hole is available on Paramount Plus in the UK, Australia, and the US.
Where to watch: Disney Plus
In our Andor review, we called it the best Star Wars show to debut on Disney Plus, and there’s a very good reason for that. Yes, The Mandalorian is up there, but Andor is unlike anything else we’ve seen from Lucasfilm’s legendary sci-fi franchise – not least because it’s an espionage thriller set in the confines of the Star Wars universe.
The Tony Gilroy-created series is set five years before Star Wars: Rogue One. It charts the rise of the Rebel Alliance through the eyes of thief-turned-spy Cassian Andor (Diego Luna), who finds purpose in aiding the burgeoning Rebellion’s fight against the Galactic Empire. Events in the show’s first season took place in the first of the aforementioned five years. The in-development second season is set to occur between years two and five, in a 12-episode installment that’ll lead directly into Rogue One‘s Shakespearean tragedy-inspired plot.
Given its placement in the Star Wars universe, Andor will wow all kinds of Star Wars fans. However, the series’ span of multiple genres – sci-fi, action-adventure, spy thriller, and political drama – makes it a compelling and highly entertaining watch for any viewer. Star Wars and thriller fans alike will revel in its absorbing story, morally complex characters, and grand set pieces.
Andor season 1 is streamable on Disney Plus worldwide.
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